Monitoring for JE goes nationwide
CLARK FREEPORT—The Department of Health (DOH) is expanding its surveillance for cases of Japanese encephalitis (JE), although the number of confirmed cases had dropped to 133 and deaths have been reduced to nine, a health official said here on Friday.
“We want to see the whole picture of JE in the country,” said Dr. Alethea de Guzman, training officer of the DOH national epidemiology bureau.
The DOH maintains nine sentinel sites in the regions of Ilocos, Cagayan Valley, Central Luzon, Bicol, Western Visayas, Metro Manila, Cordillera, Central Visayas and Davao.
Hospitals in nonsentinel regions were required to submit reports on JE and acute meningo encephalitis syndrome to the DOH’s Philippine Integrated Disease Surveillance and Response.
The 133 JE cases documented from January to August were 44 percent lower than the 238 cases for the same period in 2016. Last year, JE killed 18 people, mostly children.
There had been no outbreak of JE in the country, according to Dr. Wilda Silva, head of the DOH’s family health office. —TONETTE OREJAS